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Exclusive Interview with Thorsten Kroke from eCl@ss, standardizing Payments and Data Transmission for IOTA

Some months ago eCl@ss and the IOTA Foundation Announce Partnership to Standardize Internet of Things Payments and Data Transmission.

To understand a little more about this association and the importance of it, Thorsten Kroke expert digital processes and standards from eCl@ss, kindly gave us an interview.

I invite you to take a few minutes and find out more about eCl@ss and why this association with IOTA is so important.

Danke, Kroke!

Gabriela Jara
Content Coordinator& Writer
IOTA Hispano


Can you tell us a little about you and your work at eCl@ss?

I am responsible for the operative business of the eCl@ss standard and the eCl@ss association. Caring about digital processes, standards and master data management it is very interesting to me to develop an industrial standard together with successful global industrial companies.

What is eCl@ss, what kind of work does eCl@ss do?

eCl@ss has established itself internationally as the only ISO/IEC-compliant industry standard and is thus the worldwide reference-data standard for the classification and unambiguous description of products and services. In times of smart manufacturing and Internet of Things, a standardized and therefor lossless product description is essential for companies doing digital business.

With eCl@ss, product master data can be exchanged digitally across all borders – across sectors, countries, languages and organizations. There are no more barriers in the nature of things.

We have heard about your Partnership with IOTA to standardize the IoT and data transmission, can you tell us why  that is an important goal to accomplish in a protocol like IOTA?

From my point of view smart manufacturing (so called „industry 4.0“) and Internet of Things are next levels of automatic driven machine-to-machine communication in the whole supply chain network. In the very close future, sharing production information without loss of information or expensive mapping efforts will be the key in these processes. On the one hand you need a standard like eCl@ss, on the other you have to put these data in a smart and successful protocol. IOTA is the best fitting technology for industrial companies. Furthermore using IOTA, the companies have a smart and very effective micropayment solution during the transport in their smart manufacturing processes. No complex accounting, but just paying during the process is required. And herewith we are talking about really useful technologies and no blockchains. Wonderful.

I think you’re the one to ask: Why is it said that the data is the new oil?

Data are an important resource of a company and the strategic use of information written down in data becomes more important. Without quality proven data the digital business is not possible. But lots of SMEs are a little bit scared of data business so we are trying to help them.

When you discovered the DLTs? Do you think that data and DLTs are a good match?

Since I am interested in new technologies, sometimes I looked for DLT.

But to be honest: one of our customers initiated the contact with IOTA and after that looked deeper into the technology and IOTA’s missions. Both convinced me and so I am very happy that both organisations are working together now.

Like I mentioned before: if you want to use smart manufacturing and IOT-related processes you have to combine standardized data and DLT. And both IOTA and eCl@ss developed the first PoCs you have seen at Hannover 2019. This was very successful for us.

How would the standardization or classification of data serve  users and companies? Which advantages does this process bring?

Standardized data are a chance and an enabler for communication without loss of information. Besides there are no mappings needed which is very expensive in case of systems’ interfaces.

Master-data management relies on the presence of a detailed, harmonized description of properties and attributes. eCl@ss makes this possible with a uniform standard for the systems world in which every single detail is described.

An unambiguous classification of products and services enables users to find every item, query warehouse stocks and delivery quantities, avoid duplications, and trigger reorders automatically. Media discontinuities are eliminated and manual data transformations become unnecessary. This not only saves time and money, but also contributes to the full use of production capacities, a reduction in capital commitments, increases in production throughput and an optimization of uptimes.

What are your thoughts about IOTA?

In my opinion IOTA offers the best technique in the DLT. Better and smarter than other blockchains and efficient in its usage, which relies on the idea of the graph. This is the reason why IOTA is more interesting for companies in comparison to single person end users. Despite this, the idea of the IOTA foundation shows the advantages of the fresh new economy.

Is there anything you want to add?

If you are interested in the aforementioned topics, please visit our international congress (in English language) in September 2019. IOTA also will present a lecture about eCl@ss and IOTA. More information at: https://www.eclass.eu/eclass-congress.html

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